How Much Pain Can You Take? – Sales eXecution 3110

By Tibor Shanto – tibor.shanto@sellbetter.ca 

Sales people are always looking for “the pain” or “pain point”, I get it, not sure it’s always the right thing, but it is what it is. One I am often given for the search for pain is the response they anticipate. Many tell me, supported by a string of pundits, is that people will do more to avoid pain, than the steps or actions they will take to achieve pleasure. Theory being, if one can touch a nerve, a painful nerve, the Buyer is more likely to act, and therefore potentially buy the “fix” for that pain from the seller. On the other hand, potential pleasure is not as likely to drive action, therefore lead to less engagements and sales. Given the choice, they believe that focusing on pain yields better results than focusing on pleasure.

This piece is not meant to debate that, but rather explore how it plays out with sales people when the theory is applied to their own reality, specifically their own success.

I work with a lot of sales people, and have seen how willing or unwilling they are to take on new skills and practice’s. I know that when I carried a quota, the biggest pain I was trying to avoid, was the pain of not making quota. I did so by focusing on the pleasures my successes and resulting commissions would allow me to experience (vacations, good food, and more). Always seemed a better alternative to not making quota and having to tell the kids they can’t eat this quarter. But let’s pander to the masses and go to the pain side for a minute.

Given that less than 60% of B2B reps make quota, you have to wonder why those suffering the reality of not making quota don’t do much if anything to avoid that pain. They are ready to prescribe that very thing to their prospects, but refuse to apply it to their own success. Just the incongruity of that must be a daily challenge, adding more pressure to the pain point of not making your number.

Forget the financial reality, there is the tribal reality of being more of a burden than contributor. The percentage of companies achieving their financial goals is greater than the number of reps doing the same, meaning, if you are part of the 40% or so already suffering the pain of not making goal, there is the added pain of being a burden on those who driving their numbers and making up for yours. How does one live with the pain?

So with all that pain, why is it that a seller would not take steps to improve the outcome, take steps to change what they are doing. What they are doing is clearly not working, but a large number continue to choose to do nothing different.

OK, so the pleasure of making more money, achieving Presidents Club and the perks it brings, the pleasure of being able to hold your head high as a contributor, are not enough to encourage change. But what about the pain of having to come up with new excuses, having to settle in so many ways, and just not being able to say you are a successful sales professional. Why does that not motivate these sales people to change? And then they wonder why their lame attempt at pain is not working on their prospects either.

Tibor Shanto    LI Bottom banner

Ready Set Go – Part II0

By Tibor Shanto – tibor.shanto@sellbetter.ca 

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Last Monday, in Ready Set Go – Part II  I wrote about how to plan and execute the rest of the calendar year (for many their fiscal year). We looked at two scenarios, one for sellers who set themselves up for success. The second, and the focus for today’s post, is for those in the other group, the “Holy s#*t, there are only how many working days left in the year?” Don’t panic, that would just be a waste of your time, and time is something you don’t have in abundance; instead, get prospecting. Prospecting in two ways, first reworking all your current assets, the second is going beyond to prospects and buyers that you will need to identify, engage and move through the process. In essence what you should have been doing before the summer.

What I mean by reworking all your current assets are two specific activities. One look at all your “no decision” opportunities over the las 12 months. Opportunities that went into your pipeline, or sales process, progressed but died before coming out the other end as customers. These are not opportunities that bought from someone else, but that tested the market, then went back to the sideline having changed or done anything. In some instances this group could exceed 30% of things that go into the top of the pipe. They know you, you know them, things have changes, they may be more ready now, it certainly is worth a call. Even if they don’t re-engage now, they are likely starting the planning cycle for 2016; early bird is a good thing to be.

The other method is to crank up your referral efforts, both in your client base and, your indirect network, and your Referral 2.0 network. While I still believe in cold calling, referrals are nice too.

But you will also need to go beyond the comfort zone, and that’s where cold calling will come in. Specifically in two directions, first looking for opportunities that have a reasonable chance of closing this year. This does not have to be the proverbial lower hanging fruit, but could smaller deals for example. This may mean having more of these to sell, but that could not only mean shorter cycles, but also provide an initial entry point to accounts. The idea is to both salvage the year, and set yourself up for future growth.

Second, much like the successful group above, start hunting for things that will close next year, and close early. A challenge many sales people have is the start of year lull, often because they spend a disproportionate time “closing” late in the year. They return in the New Year only to find a neglected pipeline that takes time to build up and get back in shape. This can easily be avoided by starting early, starting now. Think of it as a variation to the above scenario, except in this instance we seed now, harvest in January. To avoid this, but you have to start now. I always find it interesting that prospects are able to hold

Look at it this way, at least if you miss quota this year, you will have given your employer a reason to keep you around for next year.

Tibor Shanto    LI Bottom banner

You Can Play Nice or You Can Play To Win0

By Tibor Shanto – tibor.shanto@sellbetter.ca 

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There are times when you hit a wall in a given sale or opportunity, where you have some though choices to make: do you walk away, do you take a different approach with the buyer, or do you abandon the person you have been working with and go around or over them.

As interesting as the choices that people make in these situations, what’s even more interesting and noteworthy from a learning standpoint, is why and how the make those choices.

Not a negative, but a reality is that many sales people positive nature and disposition, a ray of sunshine buyers will be drawn to, a “can do” attitude spiced with plenty of optimism. This drives them to look for positive outcomes, which is often different than the right or profitable outcome.

As an interesting side note, according to recent Harvard Business Review article by Steve W. Martin, What Separates the Strongest Salespeople from the Weakest, the best sales people as measured by performance, are in fact inwardly pessimistic. Questioning the buyer, motives, aspects of the sale, etc. This allows them to qualify/disqualify and be more effective sales winners (as opposed to the large group of relationship starved professional visitors who are in sales). While “possibilities” are endless, reality comes down to fewer choices, some harder than the others.

Of the choices above, abandon, change the facts or change horses, most sales people will be most reluctant to changing horses, going around or above the person they have been dealing with. Odd, because it is generally the most effective, both in terms of outcomes and best use of time.

It all hinges on how you view one fact, what are the potential consequences. The most optimistic relation types see negative consequences (now who is pessimistic), they say “If I go around or over them, it may upset the person I am dealing with, and the deal won’t happen”. The best, high performing sales people say “If I stay on the current path, the deal ain’t happening, I need to engage someone who can make it happen”.

One major difference is that the high performers look at it from the perspective of what’s right and best for the buyer and their company; they look at deal, not the people. Most importantly, they look at the situation as being “who else can I engage”, not necessarily going around or over someone. If that’s what you are looking for, that is what you’ll find.

At it’s core the question is a common one in sales, are you reactive or proactive, do you put more faith in hope or action?

It is not a question of the cup being half full or half empty. What differentiates these two types of sales people is that they both see the half glass, they both aspire to have the glass full. One is hoping that being genteel, nice and smiling will hopefully fill the glass. The other group knows they need to take proactive steps to fill the glass.

Tibor Shanto

Live Cast

March Madness: 5 Small Business Lessons to Take Away0

Feb 15

The Pipeline Guest Post – Megan Totka

There are not many events that compare with the excitement that is the NCAA College Basketball Tournament. The Super Bowl, Kentucky Derby and World Series are all great spectacles. However, something about March Madness draws in a wider audience and sparks excitement of people of all ages around the country- 181 million viewers tune in throughout the NCAA tournament each year to cheer on their favorite teams.

Are you wondering if your small business can benefit from March Madness? It can, and you don’t have to run a popular sports bar; nearly any business can learn some valuable lessons from the month of madness, some even as simple as the power of simplifying your sales. Here are five small business lessons you can take away from March Madness.

The underdog might win.
Everyone loves a happy ending, and Cinderella teams are practically a guarantee during March Madness. There are always a couple teams that no one has heard of that win one game after another in the tourney. Teams, like businesses, aren’t always operating on equal footing. Some schools have more money and more talent. But bigger is not always better and the tournament doesn’t always play out according who “should” win. Like players on a winning team, owners of successful businesses have personal characteristics such as a positive attitude, commitment towards their effort, patience and persistence – traits that can all help a team go far and a business succeed.

Embracing new technologies is smart.
The NCAA hasn’t been content to stick with what technology has worked in past years. Like plenty of organizations of every size, they have tapped into technologies to help connect with their fans and find new ones too. Remember that change is important in an organization. The adoption of new technology can seem disruptive and intimidating initially, but ultimately the change almost always results in increased productivity and improved service. It’s one of many ways to create a customer-centric culture.

Take advantage of your biggest events to earn new fans.
March Madness is unlike other sporting events because it attracts non-sports fans. The popularity of office pools, game-viewing parties and other factors engage a broader audience and increase the hype around the tourney. Use the biggest moments in your business year to connect with a wider audience. Think about events your business held throughout the year, peak seasons, new product launches and charitable events. Always remember that as you earn new fans and strive to retain current fans, good customer service is essential to help your business thrive. Keep your sales simple and focus on activities that drive constant success.

Capitalize on momentum – run with it!
Basketball, like business, can come down to momentum: accept when its time to take a timeout, know when to ride the player and occasionally take a seat on the bench. Build upon short-term successes but continue to pursue long-term goals. When things aren’t going the best, don’t look too much into it – make the most of the momentum and rely on and trust in your teammates.

Encourage friendly controversy to create some buzz.
The tournament kicks off every year with “Selection Sunday.” This is the day when the tournament participants are placed, seeded accordingly and announced on TV. There is always some complaining and banter surrounding it all, and this day gives the media and fans plenty to discuss prior to tip off of the first game. Some friendly controversy can create some healthy hype around an event, product or brand, and in turn, result in a better turnout.
March Madness gives viewers the best of sports and entertainment, upsets, and a lot of fun. Those with the most wins are the teams who trust in each other. After all, the biggest wins happen when everyone works together and focuses on the team as a whole.

What valuable lessons has March Madness taught your small business?

About Megan Totka

Megan Totka is the Chief Editor for ChamberofCommerce.com. ChamberofCommerce.com helps small businesses grow their business on the web and facilitates connectivity between local businesses and more than 7,000 Chambers of Commerce worldwide. She specializes on the topic of small business tips and resources and business news. Megan has several years of experience on the topics of small business marketing, copywriting, SEO, online conversions and social media. Megan spends much of her time establishing new relationships for ChamberofCommerce.com, publishing weekly newsletters educating small business on the importance of web presence, and contributing to a number of publications on the web. Megan can be reached at megan@chamberofcommerce.com.

Photo via flickr.com

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Forget Social Selling, and Sell Socially2

By Tibor Shanto – tibor.shanto@sellbetter.ca 

Doodle social media signs

There are two trends unfolding of in sales which to date have accidentally intersected, which should be proactively encouraged and facilitated by B2B sales organizations. The first not so new, but gaining and likely to continue to gain momentum in the coming years, is the migration by many to inside sales teams, especially types of sales that only a few years ago may not have been seen as feasible for a number of reasons. However given the advances in technology, specifically web meeting and collaboration related apps, it is now more economical, and often leads to a more effective exchange between buyer and seller. Beyond the cost factor of time for both, including travel time for the seller, sharing screens can not only allow for a more thorough exploration of issues, but there is also the ability present your product in a more fluid and contextual manner, without coming across like a heavy handed demo.

The second is newer, although given the incessant hype it just seems like it’s been hanging around for ever, is social media and social applications. While many struggle to define social selling, often resorting to contrasting it to “traditional” selling, most applications are not really new, just executed using new tools.

Taking advantage of social tools and a social approach does present an opportunity compensate for some of the differences between selling face to face, and selling remotely, I would go as far as to say you can fill or avoid some potentially risky gaps in inside/remote selling. Specifically the type of social interaction that directly occurs when you interact with people directly. Not so much between the seller and those people directly involved in the steps of the buy/sell, but more importantly the supporting cast. The receptionist, the EA, the tech support person who helps you when you are visiting.

Visiting being an important concept here. It is no surprise that many “old timers”, regularly interchange the word appointment with visit. There is a lot of to be gained via the social interactions that can be gained while “visiting”.

There are whole bunch of conversations that will never take place when selling remotely that are just part of a visit to a prospect or client. These conversation may not always pertain to the product, or the purchase itself. In fact many of these conversation will happen with people who are not part of the process, but are tuned in, and in a number of ways that sellers can find valuable and move the sale forward. Small talk can add up to a lot.

The social fabric of a company, and the social fabric of the sale is an important component. Especially in an economy where products are interchangeable, but where people are not. In an economy where many senior leaders are more likely to choose one product over another primarily due to consensus among “the group”. The buying group, the user group, the implementation group, and others. Often this consensus is driven by things other than specs and features, and more by things that evolve out of “social interactions”; you know, people buying from people. These secondary relationships are often the little things that give you an edge over a competitor, the ability to influence just a bit more.

So what happens when the opportunity for small talk and hallway conversations is gone? You turn to social. There is a host of information one can glean and utilize to make up for not being there. The art then is to leverage it during the sale. And while most sale people are good at doing this face to face, the phone limits their focus. But there is no reason you “have to rush by” the receptionist just because you are on the phone. It is up to us as professionals to “humanize” the remote selling experience for all parties.

Even if you have your “targets” direct number, there is no reason you can’t hit zero and speak with the admin or receptionist, you’d talk to them if you were there, it is up to us to “be there” even when remote, and you can do that by learning more about them from their Facebook page, tweets, Pinterest, and host of other sites that give you a window to the non-business person. LinkedIn can help you connect the dots between the players, I learn more about the person on other platforms. There is no law or reason why you cannot incorporate this into your selling, and make up for the lack of being there, change something potentially impersonal to something more personal, for the people at the prospect company, and for you. In fact you can bet that they are checking you out the same way, and making assumptions and decisions based on these things.

So while social is great for the current lead gen and sale, it has loads more value and application in actually preserving and enhancing the social side of any sale.

Excuse My Typos – Just Busy Establishing Plausible Deniability0

By Tibor Shanto – tibor.shanto@sellbetter.ca

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Mantras such as Just Do It, or Execution – Everything Else Is Just Talk, are a great way to put a focus on DOING things rather than just being a bystander or just talking about doing things or worse, talking about why you did not do it. But they are just a starting point, the objective is to do things progressively better. While I remind all of us in sales that sales success is about doing things, I also regularly have to add that it is about doing it right, doing it consistently, doing it well, doing it to the best of our abilities, and challenging ourselves to continuously improving those abilities; not just mail it in so you can say it is done, as all too many are apt to do.

I see this in all aspects of sales, those who just make ten calls to ten sequential names on a list, and call it prospecting; versus those who initiate contact and engagement with ten 10 prequalified, researched, planned and targeted viable potential buyers, using all the tools available to them, from traditional to social and everything between. Both groups can tell me they prospected, both start out with the same objective, one group merely completes a task, in the narrowest sense; the other fully executed a strategy, and the results clearly reflect both efforts.

If you’re going to start the endeavour, why not do it right, fully and completely? Some may just write it off to a lack of commitment, but I believe it goes further than that, it goes to a lack of accountability and responsibly. Finding it safe and safer to blend in to grey rather than expend or invest in the effort to commit to either black or white.

You see this characteristic present itself in other ways. Two or three times a week I get an e-mail from sales types where at the bottom it has a disclaimer along the lines:

I am sending this from a (insert brand or type here) mobile device, sorry for any typos.

Now I am the first to admit that I regularly have typos in my blog posts, despite the effort to read and reread them before posting, but when I mess up, I thank the folks who point it out and take steps to not repeat it in the future. But rather than doing it right, it strikes me that the people in question go for establishing plausible deniability from the outset, even before the outcome is known. Or maybe they know what results their efforts will yield, and find it easier to establish plausible deniability than the work it would take to ensure the right outcome.

We all know that many of today’s mobile devices have some form of auto word correction/completion utility which sometimes insert the freakiest words instead of the word we were looking to type, but it is up to me to ensure that I communicating what I intend, not the devices’ algorithm. Where is the accountability and responsibility for the quality of the result? Sure it is just an e-mail, but it is an e-mail that reflects on the writer, and by extension their work, further their commitment to doing things right. If one can’t be bothered for such a simple thing, how much more effort will there be for more demanding things leading to and from the sale.

Another example of this half-assed approach is sales forecasts. While again automation has helped, it is still a question of garbage in garbage out. Talk to most sales people, they will tell you that their task is to submit a forecast. While their company is looking for an accurate forecast, one that will help them better run their business, understand potential order flow and resource requirement, protect margins, which in turn help make the product and your selling more competitive. I have had more than one rep tell me that they in fact have two forecasts, one they share, and the other is their own secret stash of opportunities. They care less about contributing, than covering their ass. Sure some of this is a result of a poor pipeline and opportunities to forecast, but the root cause is the same. When asked why, they unabashedly will tell you that it is a CYA exercise, completely discarding accountability.

What’s worse is their managers perpetuate the problem, discounting many of the forecasts and scaling things back subjectively to cover their own. They could and should work with the reps to A) understand what is expected; B) more importantly to actually be able to deliver a forecastable set of opportunities, that when proper weighted based on the companies defined sales process will actually deliver the results forecasted. But it is easier to scale back, build in “a plausibly deniable” buffer, and move on to the next task.

Managers can also do a better job of setting expectations. We have all seen instances where they set the task of their reps doing 10 calls, and they get exactly that, 10 calls. How much more effort would it take to articulate what those 10 calls are really meant to do in terms of engaging with real prospects, and pipeline opportunities. I know of one company where they have dictated that reps make 100 calls a week (either phone or door to door), probably twice what the team was (and is) used to. Well they got their 100 or so calls, without much lift in prospects or pipeline.

Mutual accountability up and down the line, with clear expectations set not just for results, but how to best achieve those results can go a long way to improving those results. Allowing cracks to be filled with plausible deniability not only kills results, but creates and fosters a culture without accountability, and no focus for change and improvement. If as a manager and an organization, you stop allowing people to establish plausible deniability, you will take a major step towards establishing a foundation of accountability, responsibility and success, a culture that will consume less resources while yielding more and consistent results.

What’s in Your Pipeline?
Tibor Shanto

Protecting New Recruits From The Mediocre Masses – Sales eXchange 2110

By Tibor Shantotibor.shanto@sellbetter.ca

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Many in sales buy into, or more accurately, settle for the 80/20 rule, one example would be 20% of a company’s reps generating 80% of sales.  This post is less about disputing or validating the accuracy of the rule, if you want that, download The Shanto Principle; but more about how to ensure that your new recruits develop to be the 20%.  AT the same time, you can you use the same tactics to move from the 80% group delivering just 20% of the revenues, to the 20% club, the group that makes a difference.

Let’s look at a new rep joining a company, being social critters they want to fit in, be part of the team (part of the crowd, easy to hide in a crowd), they look around the office and take in the atmosphere.  Part of the ritual, is talking to their colleagues, getting the lay of the land, “how are things done around here?”

So who is likely to be in the office, who is likely to have time to just “talk”, rather than being out at client/prospect meetings; who lacks the discipline to not stop what they had scheduled, and shoot the breeze with the new guy?  You guessed it, the members of the 80% club.  The 20% club is too busy being out and driving revenues.

This is not to say that the 20% club members are not willing to help a new person out, on the contrary, they do, but they are not in the office, hanging around, they are making things happen.  So for the new team member, they need to make the effort to find and engage with the 20% club members.  In fact this can be an early indicator as to what you hired, how well do they seek out, engage with and model the 20%.

This is why the onboarding process is crucial, managers and organizations must proactively guide and steer new recruits, even experienced sellers, sheltering them from the 80%.

Picture the new recruit in the office with the all-knowing non-producing masses, as he or she stands up to peak out over their cubical walls, and the see the 80% members at their desk, getting ready to prospect, getting ready to learn about the new product, getting ready to go and ask the manager for a further discount so they can win the deal – putting more effort into selling the need to discount than they did selling the prospect on the value, getting ready finish their picks for the pool; for the most part, getting ready.

What is the take away for the new recruit – “hey this is the way they do things around here, if I’m gonna fit it, I best do the same”.

Stepping out to do the things the 20% do requires guidance, or expectation from their manager, and the ability to against the crowd.

Inviting the 20% club members to mentor new recruits not only instills good habits in new team members, but develops future leader in the process.  This in turn can help you increase the quality of the team, and tilt the numbers in your favour, over time, you can move the dial from 80/20, to dare we say it, 70/30.

What’s in Your Pipeline?
Tibor Shanto

The Coma Call – Sales eXchange 1841

By Tibor Shanto – tibor.shanto@sellbetter.ca
Coma Call

As the euphoria of the new year beings to fade and the harsh reality of winter and the pipeline begin to set in, it is a great time to go to your Coma List.

What is a Coma List?  It is a list containing two types of prospects:

  • Those people who were involved in a sales cycle with you some time in the last 18 months, but did not go to decision, with you or any other vendor (You can say these are the folks in a self-induced coma, maybe there needs to be a third group, those that our sales effort put into a coma)
  • Those people you were going to call, but didn’t get around to, had better prospects, no time, etc.

Let’s look at the latter. I am not saying it is right or good, but the reality is that there are times when prospects do fall between the cracks, or maybe you had bigger fish to fry at the time, and you ran out of time.  You get involved in other cycles and activities, the next thing you know several weeks of months have passed, and you did not follow up, some feel awkward reaching out given the time that has passed.

The start of the January is a great time to reach out to these people to see if there is an opportunity to reengage.  Time has passed for them, as it has for you, their requirements may or may not have been satisfied, but statistics indicate that the status quo prevails, and they likely took no action.  Either way it is a call worth making, if they “hate” you and don’t want to see you till the end of time, fine, it is a 30 second call.

But just as often the outcome of a “Coma Call” is surprisingly positive.  If in fact the prospect falls into the majority and has not taken action, your call may be welcomed.  It is the start of the year for them as well, they are reviewing objective for the coming year, and the issue that brought you together the first time may still be on that list, and you can be a familiar potential way to address it.

Don’t let pride or fear hold you back.  Look at the percentages, the worst case is they say something negative and hang up, you’ll  live!  On the other hand they may welcome the call and reengage, and better, buy.  I can tell you from firsthand experience that I regularly get business from Coma Calls, right through the year.  Unless you were rude or abusive the first time round, chances are that they will reengage, and then it is up to you to go to work, rebuild your relationship, meet their requirements and deliver.

Yes, it was a mistake to let the sale slip into a coma, but that does not mean you should not take steps to revive the sale.

 

Enter to Win Tickets to The Art Of Sales

 

What’s in Your Pipeline?
Tibor Shanto

Compounding Your Sales Successes40

One of the greatest things invented by the financial service industry was “Compound Interest“.  Save for the fact that no one is paying much interest on money these days, the reality of Compound Interest still holds and delivers added gain regardless of how low of high rates are.  I was watching a teacher explain the concept to a grade 5 class, and he brought it down to “a little to start, a little from here, a little from there, and over time you end up with more than straight interest”.

As you assess your plan for sales success in 2013, you can take advantage of “Compounding” to achieve greater success. Rather than resolving to do new things in new ways in 2013, why not resolve to improve a little here and a little there with things you already do or need to do; but do it in a way that ends up being greater than the individual gains on your efforts.

Read On…

What’s in Your Pipeline?
Tibor Shanto

Sales Calls: Success through Preparation50

Guest Post – Megan Totka

Sales people are tasked with some of the biggest challenges in the working world. Rejection comes with the territory and simply cannot be a deterrent for future attempts. Adaptation and the ability to learn quickly about a variety of topics are job requirements. A good salesperson consistently closes deals. A great sales person sells things, but also combines an air of expertise with a genuine feeling of concern for the client.

In a market that is increasingly concerned with “inbound” techniques, the traditional sales call is more powerful than ever. Whether a cold call or an arranged one, clients are more appreciative of the human connection than ever before. This does not mean that everyone will be happy to hear from you. It DOES mean that people on sales calls have an opportunity to reach clients on a personal level and close sales on the line. 

One way to prepare for success is through pre-sales call preparation. Take time to form a game plan and winning mentality before dialing the number. Follow these simple steps in preparation and then feel confident in your sales approach.

  1. Immerse yourself. If there are particular industries that you always sell to, get to know what makes them tick. Read up on industry trends, perform market research, attend trade shows and read the best blogs on the topics. You will be able to speak more naturally in your sales calls and your clients will regard you as an authority in your field.
  2. Prepare questions. There is a misconception in sales that the person making the call has to know everything upfront. In fact, most clients find it off-putting if a sales person assumes to know more about their business or industry than they do. You may already have a template of questions that you ask every client, but go ahead and add a few more specific ones. As you call back for repeat business, you may not need a “list” in front of you because the inquiries will just flow.
  3. Do not reinvent the wheel. If there are sales strategies that have worked for other businesses and company leaders in similar industries, use them again. It is not “lazy” to duplicate your tactics from one client to the next – it is smart and efficient. What you want to avoid, however, is the feeling that you are just reading from a script or “automating” your sales call. Even if you ARE reading a script – switch it up a little bit and make the words your own.

There are obviously more approaches each individual can take before a sales call, but these are some basics that every person can follow. As in any job, being successful in sales takes some trial and error. Each person will find their strengths and weaknesses through experience. Even seasoned sales veterans can learn a few new things along the way about what works, what used to work but no longer does, and what to completely avoid on all occasions. It is all part of an evolving marketplace – and one where sales calls still work if executed correctly.

Megan Totka is the Chief Editor for ChamberofCommerce.com. She specializes on the topic of small business tips and resources. ChamberofCommerce.com helps small businesses grow their business on the web and facilitates connectivity between local businesses and more than 7,000 Chambers of Commerce worldwide. Megan also specializes in marketing solutions for businesses.

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